Mekong Delta tours range from luxury Mekong boat tours and cruises to more active hiking and cycling tours. It is indeed possible to enjoy Mekong River tours on a bicycle or a motorcycle or on foot, since the roads are fairly good and the terrain is quite flat. Because the entire southwestern portion of Vietnam encompasses the nine channels or mouths of the mighty river and is criss-crossed with canals, you will undoubtedly have to board a boat of some kind during your trip.
Many of the passenger boats and cruise ships have facilities that allow cyclists and bikers to bring their mounts onboard. Even many of the traditional sampans that offer short Mekong River tours and excursions will allow you to travel with your bicycle, since the major form of transportation in rural areas is by bike. These tours provide one of the ways to experience authentic rural life on the back roads of the rich agricultural Mekong Delta. Here you are treated to timeless scenes of river life that has changed little over the centuries. Fishermen still fish from small sampans, water buffalo still help to cultivate the rice fields, and ancient pagodas and temples dot the routes.
It is even possible to enjoy scuba diving Mekong Delta tours at beautiful tropical resorts on the beaches south of Ho Chi Minh City around the town of Vung Tau. Only 60 miles south of Ho Chi Minh City, Vung Tau is one of the best diving spots in the country. You will find a wide variety of accommodations here, from budget hotels to deluxe beach resorts. There is even golf available at the Paradise Golf Resort, one of the best golf courses in Vietnam with 27 holes, many of which play to or along the South China Sea.
More pristine beaches will be found on Phu Quoc Island off the southwestern Mekong Delta coast and the coast of Cambodia. You can fly here from Ho Chi Minh City, but Mekong boat tours and ferries are available from the mainland. The trip takes from about one hour to about two-and-a-half hours, depending on your point of embarkation.
One of the most popular destinations for Mekong Delta tours is the charming city of Can Tho, located about a four-hour drive west of Ho Chi Minh City and in the geographic center of the Mekong Delta. The city is famous for its floating markets, bird gardens, and extensive network of canals. You can take Mekong boat tours from Ho Chi Minh City to Can Tho, but it is more efficient to fly or drive, and then take Mekong River day tours from your base of operations. Accommodations here range from modest guesthouses and two and three star Mekong Delta hotels to the luxury four star Victoria Spa and Resort. Many other day tours are available from Ho Chi Minh City, including excursions to the Cu Chi Tunnels that played such an important role during the American Vietnam War.
More ambitious Mekong River tours are cruises through the other Southeast Asia countries through which the river flows. The country most often included on the same itinerary is the Mekong River in Cambodia. However, more and more cruises also include the Mekong River in Laos, the Mekong River in Thailand, Myanmar (formerly Burma), and even China.